Snow White, Version 1.0

I had a pretty good sense of Snow’s personality from day one, but some of the details were significantly different in the beginning.  For one thing, the battle with her mother had left her visibly scarred.  She also went by “Lina” originally, instead of Snow.

Snow’s blindness could have added an interesting dimension to her character, but it just didn’t feel right for her.  I have a hard time explaining it more than that, and to be honest, I’m curious how the books would have gone if I had decided to keep this aspect of the character.

The reflection showed another woman standing behind Danielle.  “I’m sorry.  I’ve never seen anything like it.”

She could have said the same for this newcomer.  Pale as porcelain, with a smooth, oval face that evoked the innocence of childhood.  All save her eyes.

Danielle stared.  The girl’s eyes were covered with a milky white film.  The skin around them crinkled with burn scars, mostly hidden behind a black curtain of hair.  A delicate choker circled her perfect neck.  A series of tiny oval mirrors was held together by fine braids of gold wire.

“You must be Danielle.”  The girl grabbed Danielle’s shoulders and pulled her into a tight embrace.  “I’m so glad you’re going to be joining us.  It’s been dreadfully unpleasant with only Talia to keep me company.”

“That’s enough,” interrupted the queen.  Her expression was stern, though Danielle could see her lips quirking.  “You’ll have to forgive Lina.  She spent much of her life hiding in the woods, and her social skills are a bit tarnished.”

Danielle glanced at the mirror.  “Skin white as snow,” she whispered.

Lina nodded so vigorously her hair slipped over her face.  She pursed her lips and blew it back.  Her skin showed no trace of paint or art, but her lips were red as ripe apples against her pale skin.

Queen Beatrice was nodding.  “Ermillina was the most beautiful girl in all of her kingdom.”

Lina gave a modest shrug.  “It was a rather small kingdom.”

“Your eyes…” Danielle said, not knowing how to finish.

“Ruined,” Lina said.  She touched the mirrors around her neck.  “These are my eyes now.”